ALS Fundraising Campaign Went Viral: A Marketing Goldmine

There’s a lot more money going to ALS research right now because an ALS fundraising campaign went viral, to the utter delight of the charity. Let’s see what we can take away from this phenomenon that can be beneficial for your future ad campaigns.

First of all, if a picture tells a thousand words, a video must be worth millions of words. Using video in a campaign takes what amounts to a campaign flyer and turns it into the great American novel. Everyone wants to know the story, tell the story, and be a part of the story. This is engagement at its finest. The best marketing videos create a sense of community and promote the notion that we are all in this together.

Second, don’t feel that all of the content for your campaign needs to come from your company. Give consumers something to do. There’s no ALS conglomerate out there producing video after video of people pouring ice water on their heads. People are doing this all on their own. What if your company started the ad campaign that resulted in thousands or even millions of people making their own little ad spots for your company? And oh, just as an aside, all of that extra advertising costs your company absolutely nothing.

Social media can spread your message like wildfire and companies are taking notice of this phenomenon. For example, Coca Cola’s share a Coke with a friend campaign is really doing the same thing. People are posting pics of bottles with the names of friends and loved ones and tagging them. Thus, it’s possible to make the jump from nonprofit to corporate advertising and to get people to play along without even thinking about it.

Granted, it’s easier to have people spread a campaign in this format when it is for charity. The ALS fundraising campaign went viral due in no small part because of this. But your ad campaign can make use of the same principles. You can do this by using video, creating a sense of community, and getting consumers to pass on the campaign ideals. When this happens you have created a self-perpetuating ad campaign that only costs your company the initial start-up videos. It is then community fervor that takes over and puts your product or service in the spotlight.